China cracks down on discrimination against job applicants

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has vowed to punish employers who discriminate against job seekers who have had COVID-19.
By: | July 19, 2022

This came after reports that applicants were being overlooked for jobs because they had been infected.

Speaking at a regular meeting of China’s cabinet, the State Council, on Wednesday, Li called for equal employment rights for all and said discriminating against people who have had the coronavirus was prohibited and that anyone who did so would be punished.

He said pressure on the labour market remained significant. “The government must continue to put employment front and centre, and do everything possible to stabilise [the situation] and increase jobs,” Li was quoted as saying by the official Xinhua news agency.

While much of the world is living with the virus, China has maintained a strict zero-COVID policy, trying to stamp out any cases with tough controls and mass testing when outbreaks occur – at the cost of the economy.

READ: China’s labour market sees improvement in first half of 2022

Widespread coronavirus restrictions and lockdowns in big Chinese cities have had a major impact on the country’s economic activity in recent months, especially the service industry, leaving many people out of work or with not enough employment.

China’s surveyed unemployment rate in urban areas was 5.9% in May, up from 5.1% in December, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.